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[Story 03] A big hug (to Sasha and Marina)

This was the first time I met Sasha and Marina. I did not know their existence before and neither did they. However, it has never been a problem for us. Seeing them at the first time, I felt a sense of familiarity, a sense of understanding that I couldn’t even explain. I hadn’t hosted any couchsurfers before. Most of the time I just meet up with them, show them around and we talk, sometimes all day long, other times only a few hours. I live in a tiny apartment with a small balcony where my mom often uses to keep old stuff and grow her green plants. Thus, I know it would be uncomfortable for my guests if they stay here. Wondering when I would be able to buy my own house – a really huge one so that my couchsurfing friends can stay as many days as they want :-O.

I had to go out early this morning when my guests also planned to when my guests also planned to continue their journey to China. I was leaving home while they were still asleep and maybe having sweet dreams. I didn’t have the chance to say goodbye to them, to give them a goodbye hug. I did not have the chance to listen to their stories, to share with them my thoughts that surely I know they will always understand. Everytime I see them, I always think of Chris, of what he had done, of everything he had given up to live his own life, of the way he smiled when talking about freedom and about uncertain life ahead.

In couchsurfing, everyone treats each other with kindness and never asks the other for more. They share the same thoughts, the same belief; and they always take a leap of faith into the unknown future. I believe in Sasha and Marina, believe in their sayings and their visions. They are a lovely couple and the love they give each other is just so real.

“Going on the road trip, we have to deal with tons of difficulties but we have each other, so we believe everything will fall into place. Someday you will find your special-someone who understands you, shares the same passion with you, and things will get surely easier. Believe me.” Marina said to me when we were all wandering along a lake nearby my apartment.

That night, we sat at the edge of the lake, talking for hours about things in life.

“We travel because we love freedom. Living a normal life- working nine-to-five, paying bills, raising kids,.. is not what we love, at least till this moment. We are still young, we might think about it after we fulfill our own dreams.”

“Becoming adventures has changed us a lot, certainly. Maybe it is sort of vague for us but I’m sure our family and our friends will see such changes clearly. Travelling gives us the chance to meet new people just like you, which is our motivation and is also one of the reasons for us not quiting. “

“So you guys have any plans for the future yet? I mean after the trip..”

Marina shrugged her shoulders -” I don’t know, maybe we will travel, travel and travel. We don’t have a fixed plan. Just go with the flow.”

Their dream is to go to America, which is fairly challenging particularly for Russian people.

We decided to go back home when the rain started to pour. Everyone around us hurried to their place, trying to get out of the rain. I thought my two friends would tell me to hurry up but out of my expectation they were just walking leisurely as if nothing was happening. Sasha was rejoicingly looking upwards with arms outstretched tasting fresh raindrops falling from the sky. He said, “I like rain, it’s cool and it’s just like a shower”.

“But you two may get a cold then.”

“We are strong and healthy. This little rain can not get us down.” – They smiled at me and said.

“Bad weather is one of the difficulties on the way, isn’t it?”

“Not really. We have never seen it as a difficulty. If it’s not dangerous,  we just face it head on”.

They reminded me of people out there who are always scared of nature. They try to get out of  bad weather and feel terrible everytime it starts to rain. They immediately pull their kids out whenever seeing them jumping into puddles formed after the rain. I’m not sure if this way of protection is good enough because just like others, I always blame bad weather for everything.

Talking to them helps me to broaden my visions, to know that the world is big and my hands are just so small.

I forgot to give them a goodbye hug, hopefully somewhere on the road I’m following, I will have the chance to meet them again and give them a big hug.


Vietnamese version here

Published in Travel Travel Journal

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